Vanguard Part 1

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Vanguard Part 1

Postby Minsten » Thu Mar 22, 2007 11:01 pm

Yeah... I started this several months ago and slowly been building it up. I haven't worked on it for about 2 months or so now. So I decided I'd post up what I've done so far. Its kind of violent at the beginning and there isn't much macro in this part of the story, but from the introduction of the macro onwards there is going to be much more macro within it... well here it is, comments please and helpful critisim. Oh and if its too violent please move it or something... though I won't be able to see the comments for it if it is moved to the adult section. :P

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Vanguard

Thudding footfalls of clawed feet resounded through the forest as the owners of these clawed feet made their way through the dense vegetation. The column of wolves marched forward with purpose, each with a look of grim determination on their faces, making it clear that what they expected to come was not to be pretty. This group of around twenty black furred wolves all stood around approximately seven foot, and all of which were armed with hefty double bladed battle axes and armoured with blackened steel breastplates. The group marched onwards until they reached a large clearing where they stopped on the edge of it. At the head of the column stood a slightly older looking fur, his midnight black fur just beginning to show tainted signs of graying, while his battered looking face clearly showed the experience of numerous battles he had seen. He placed the head of his battle axe upside down against the ground as he surveyed the ground before him, speechless as were the rest of his men around him.

Before the group stood one of their kinds’ villages; except it was razed to ground, only a few of their buildings remained standing, all showing the signs of the burning that had occurred. “This… is unforgivable” the lead wolf growled out between gritted teeth as he finally broke the silence, “those damnable creatures will truly pay for this” he swore as his hand tightened considerably around the shaft of his battle axe.

Without further word the aged wolf led the group in to the razed village. There was a grim stillness in the group as they marched through, their eyes laying upon the corpses of their own kind. “Sir!” cried out a younger wolf, “Yes, what is it?” replied the lead wolf, “Sir… it seems that the enemy… have…” the youth struggling to find the words to explain what he saw, not because of complexity of what he saw, but because the sight drove terror into his heart, “spit it out man!” urged the older wolf, his patience quickly thinning, “well… it appears they have a macro in their ranks sir…” the you finally managing to force the words out as he pointed towards the tremendous paw indent, easily the length of a house. The aged wolves eyes widened in fear as he quickly sprinted over paw print to investigate it. He looked down at the foresaid paw print and cursed colourfully at the sight, “we truly are in for the fight of our lives” he muttered to himself before slamming a fist in rage against the ground. The experienced wolf had a strong hatred for macros of any kind, mainly because of his bad experiences with them, the hatred becoming so strong that he labeled any macro he came across as a menace and would do anything in his power to aid in its destruction, even if it was somewhat limited seeing as his massive battle axe was little more than a toothpick for the average macro. Though it was true that modern day tanks and planes could possibly stop a macro; the veterans’ tribe of wolves were very traditional and almost lived in a medieval world, relying more upon hand to hand combat with very little technology involved in their communities; which was the same of their enemies.

“Cren!” cried out another older wolf, named Hendridge, to the leader, “what is it now?” Cren answered as he headed over to his old time friend and comrade, “look” he pointed towards the forest to the opposite side of the destroyed village. To most people nothing would’ve looked wrong with the peaceful and quaint looking forest, but to these two fighters the problem with the forest was obvious and spotted almost instantaneously. The tree swayed in the breeze just as was par usual, but there were faint lines around the bases of the trees, and all these lines were straight and in a very similar place on a small group of trees. It was a very minuet thing to spot, but the veterans had little trouble spotting it.

“Men, they are here!” Cren called out to his troops, quickly assembling them into their ranks; two lines of ten. The men looked around for their opponents but couldn’t spot them anywhere. But Cren and his veteran colleague knew exactly where they were and he hefted up a smaller axe before hurling it with considerable strength into one of the trees; the blade of the axe cutting through the hollow tree and sticking into the chest of the foe hidden inside. An ear piercing shriek came from inside the tree as the creature died slowly. Quickly realizing their surprise attack had been discovered, doors opened up in the hollowed out trees for the two creatures hidden inside to scurry out of.

Standing before the group of wolves was now a ragged line of ratmen, most of which were carrying short spears. The ratmen stood approximately around five foot in height, making their size and strength far inferior to that of their canine opponents, but the sheer number of them is what would cause the wolves the trouble. While there were twenty wolves, there were just over fifty of the ratmen.
The wolves stood firm in their ranks as the ratmen jeered at them, trying to taunt them out of their formation, but they refused to budge as anytime one of them even looked like they were contemplating charging forward, either Cren or his veteran friend would bark out an order for them to hold their position. Soon though the ratmen gave up and just charged forward at the wolves as they hefted up their spears before hurling them at the two lines of wolves. The wolves meanwhile were doing something similar, but instead used smaller axes to fling at the charging enemy. Despite there being a lot more of the spears thrown, the axes caused more damage as the wolves were much more accurate. The result was around ten of the ratmen fell dead before they had even reached the enemies line, while only two of the wolves fell prey to lucky shots from the rats wildly thrown spears.

Quickly following up the missile attacks, the wolves in the front row hefted up their battle axes from the floor so that they were positioned with their heads touching the ground on each of the wolves’ right side as both of their hands gripped tightly on the shaft of the great weapons. Meanwhile the ratmen kept charging forward as they withdrew their second spears from upon their backs and held them in assorted positions to try and spear the wolves upon them as they used the momentum of their charge to smash into the wolves’ lines.

But before this could happen, Cren made sure to dull of their charge. “Hold!” he cried out every few seconds, trying to make sure that no wolf made a poor timed attack. “Now!” he finally cried out when there was enemies just in front of the frontline, causing the frontline to swing their battle axes up from stationary against the ground and scrapping against the ground until its in front of them and swings upwards, taking off limps and ripping through fur with ease. The few wolves that took too long to react to the call suffered as they eventually managed to connect their blows with their opponent in front of them, but too late to prevent the spear from the rat to penetrate through their armour and injuring them, one of them falling prone to a lucky lunge which tore through his flesh and emerged out the other side causing a howl of pain to leave the lips of the wolf in question.

As soon as the frontlines of the wolves engaged the rats, the second line swung their axes from a high position down between the two wolves in front of them to make sure that the rats that avoided the attacks didn’t have a chance to thrust their spears at the wolves. This formation didn’t last long as the ratmen interspersed themselves amongst the wolves, using their numbers to separate the group, making the well thought out and tactical battle a mere fight for their very existence.

Cren ducked as a spear was thrust at his head by a much shorter rat. He just shook his head as he swung his axe round to decapitate the rat before he kicked the rolling head into the face of another charging rat, causing it to stumble back and he launched out his arm to land his hand around the neck of the rat, “die” Cren spat out at the rat as his grip tightened considerably until the rat’s neck made a sickening snap, a grin slowly appeared on the wolves lips until he noticed two more rats charging at him. Improvising, the veteran wolf threw the rat’s limp body into the air and caught it by the ankle, then flung the body at the two charging, knocking them both to the ground. Following up he charged forward, throwing his battle axe from his left hand to his right hand before gripping it with both hands and jumping high in the air, bringing his axe down with tremendous force as the ratman raised his spear up horizontally to try and block the attack, but it was hopeless. The momentum of the swing broke through the spear, snapping it in two and continuing forward with still enough momentum that it tears through its chest with a sickening ‘thunk’ as it breaks through its ribcage and striking its lung. The wolf pulled out a knife from his left hip and quickly stabbed the other rat’s jugular before it could escape.

With a sickening sound Cren pulled out the head of his battle axe from the dead body. He turned to survey the battle and a smile came on his face as he saw that the numbers of rats was quickly thinning as the strength of the wolves overcame the numbers of the rats. But this observing proved to be foolish as he heard a cry come out from one of the other wolves, but he couldn’t quite make out what was heard, but he soon realized that it was a cry of warning as he turned to see a spear thrust at him. Having no time to dodge the blow, all he could do was watch as the spear pierced through his left shoulder and shot out the opposite side of his arm.

Pain seared through the wolf’s body as he let out a howl that penetrated through the darkening sky. Cren quickly gripped at the wrist of the rat that had stabbed him. The snarling wolf tightened his grip considerably until he snapped the rat’s wrist, then ripped the spear out of his arm and stabbed it into the face of the rat. With his teeth still clenched he turned back to the battle to see that basically all the ratmen were dead, and those that were still alive were in a full rout. Cren surveyed the damage done to his men and sighed heavily, most of them had sustained some injury or the other and a large number of them lay dead on the ground. There was now only seven wolves left including himself still alive, but as he looked over to the blood spurting from a wound from a wolf he knew it was soon to be six.

“So what now Sir?” Hendridge asked as he turned to Cren. The veteran wolf having a few minor cuts and a couple of nasty bruises from the conflict; but other than that he looked relatively okay, other than the psychological affect of watching his own kin dying before his eyes yet again, but he was slowly becoming accustomed to this harsh reality of battle. Some of the newer recruits looked considerably more shaken, the reality of battle leaving them speechless and shocked. “We return to the base… there is nothing left here except possibly more of those damned rats” Cren replied as he walked nearer towards his second in command before lowering his tone down to a whisper so that the others couldn’t make out his exact words, “plus these lads seem a bit out of there, they’re going to need to recover” he whispered as he moved his left arm around, trying to overcome the pain from the injury; the motion causing his sharp teeth to grit together in order to prevent himself from howling in pain. Giving up on this rather painful method of trying to get use back into the throbbing arm he turned to the other wolves in the group, “pick up your weapons and let us go” he ordered the group, but got an enraged reply from a younger wolf, “what about the others!?! They died here! Are we just going to leave their bodies here to rot?!?” he cried out in frustration. “Who the hell do you think you’re talking to?!? I’m your superior and you’ll treat me that way!” he growled out in anger, his eyes showing his fury, “the bodies will be collected by a larger group later on… unless you want us to be attacked by another band of the rats while we’re trying to drag more bodies than there are of us, I’d strongly suggest listening to my orders and carrying them out!” This growled reply seemed to knock the sense into the younger wolf and he nodded as he scrambled to grab his weapon and stood to attention along with the others.

As the depressed looking group of wolves started to exit the building a shudder was felt through the ground. They all stopped, but most of them dismissed and continued forward except for Cren who waited a second later, could it be? he wondered in his head as his senses heightened as he strained to try and hear something. After a few seconds of waiting Hendridge turned back to Cren, “you coming or what?” he asked a bit puzzled at the other wolf’s sudden halt. Cren let out a sigh of relief as he heard nothing more and gave a nod, “yes, I’m coming, lets go” he replied as he jogged after the group to catch up quickly. But just as he started to relax again a similar shudder was felt through the ground, but this time it was much stronger. Cren cursed, he was almost sure he knew that it was and turned to the others, “lets pick up the speed people… run!” he ordered as he launched himself into a sprint, a hint of fear in his voice. The others looked at each other in surprise, they had never seen Cren even show the slightest signs of worry, let alone fear; so hearing his fear tainted voice they all chased after him, not knowing what from, but knowing they better do it for their own safety.

The vibrations increased frequency and strength, causing some of the less steady footed wolves to stumble a bit, but fortunately were able to regain their footing before they fell over. After a few more minutes of running the vibrations had increased even further and Cren made a decision. He stopped suddenly and turned back, “keep running you fools!” he ordered the others as they stopped running as their superior did. Hendridge shook his head slowly, “the rest of you leave, I shall stay with Cren” he declared, getting a stern look from the other, “I need you to lead them back to camp… now go!” he growled out, finally getting a solemn nod from the other as he lead the others away. Cren turned back as he placed the spike at the bottom of his battle axe against the ground in front of himself and rested his arms on the top of the great axe as he leant on it in wait.

Cren waited for a few minutes and began to wonder what was going on; he no longer felt the vibrations anymore. Was he just losing his mind or becoming so paranoid that he turned the slightest sign of trouble into a cause for fear? Had that singular most frightening experience of his life really made him suspect that anything similar to what happened before meant it was coming again? Several thoughts raced through his head as he contemplated his own sanity. That was until he heard cries of pain coming from some place far behind him and felt the vibrations returning once again in a similar location.

As soon as his mind registered these noises he completely forgot that just seconds ago he had been questioning himself. Instead now, he was focused on the source of the disturbance. A howl reached the wolf’s ears and he grimaced; now he knew it was his own men in trouble. Redoubling his efforts, he sprinted, ignoring the throbbing pain in his left shoulder. The crying was becoming increasingly louder and it caused him to close his eyes in frustration. How could he have been so foolish? Of course it would go for the larger group instead of just him. Cursing his poor judgment he neared a large bush, which the other side of he knew was where the chaos was.

The noise stopped abruptly just as Cren charged through the bush, suffering several minor cuts from ends of branches. As he burst through the other side of the brush, he surveyed the carnage before him. Bodies littered the clearing within the forest. Some were torn in half in ragged cuts; others had huge holes in their bodies, while the majority were flattened to paste inside what looked to be enormous paw prints. He scanned the area to see any survivors and noticed Hendridge crawling away using his hands. The veteran’s legs had been squashed to a pulpy mess. Cren started towards his long time friend, but before he had taken a few steps a titanic footpaw crashed down upon Hendridge. Cren backed away slowly as his eyes ran up the length of the grey furred, gigantic leg. He tries to think of something to compare it too, but he struggled and eventually the closest comparison he could make was the leg the thickness of a rather large tree, such as a redwood. Looking back to the rat, he found that it was crouched down, picking up the flattened remains of Hendridge. The macro then chucked the crushed carcass into his open maw and swallowed with a sick look of pleasure written on its muzzle.

Cren searched around for a means of escape, knowing outrunning the thing was out of the question. His eyes then returned to the beast before him and continued upwards to see the thing was wearing nothing except a loincloth. Finally his eyes rested on the colossal, jeering face of the creature as it watched its next ‘toy’. Taking all this in; Cren guessed that the ratmen had somehow managed to create some device that allowed a rat to grow to tremendous size. Either that or they just happened to find a macro rat creature that decided to aid them. The ratman stood at approximately ninety foot in height. “I… hate… macros…” Cren muttered to himself as he unsheathed his battle axe from his back and waited for the creature to come. He refused to go down without a fight.

The macro rat stomped towards, its figure looming over the comparatively minute wolf. Cren couldn’t help but stare up in awe, his mouth hanging agape as he stumbled back. “Desert” the rat said simply, but his voice commanded the wolf’s attention, probably due to the sheer volume of it, despite it only being normal volume for the creature itself. Saliva dripped down the corners of his maw as it looked hungrily at the tiny morsel before him. “All you will taste is the edge of my blade!” the wolf declared defiantly as he held the axe aloft. The rat didn’t even bother to reply to that as he lifted his footpaw up to hover it above his prey. Cren backed away slowly as his gaze remained fixated on the bottom side of the footpaw which was covered in entrails and blood.

Quite suddenly the footpaw smashed its way downwards on the wolf. Cren dived sideways, praying that he had enough strength and could jump far enough to escape with his life. Luckily for the wolf, the rat had just been playing with it. The rat had slowed his footpaws descent enough for his toy to dive away. If he had wanted to, the rat could’ve flattened the wolf that instant, but he saw that this was the last of the micros left around and decided he would make the most out of this one. At least it had the spirit to try and survive, unlike some of the others that had given up any thought of surviving the instant they saw him. It was understandable to the rat, the sheer size difference between them made it impossible for them to survive in a fight; unless it was his whim.

Again the footpaw was raised above the wolf, but this time Cren decided he need to get to some place where he could possibly stand a chance of surviving more than a few seconds. After surviving the first stomp he knew that this abominable creature was just amusing itself. He just hoped that the rat didn’t lose its amusement in him before he achieved this.

A few more narrow escapes from becoming little more than a red paste on the ground Cren found himself at the forests edge and he knew he had to do it now before the macro rat realized the reason for him diving to the same side every time. The amused expression on the rat’s faced was wiped away when it saw that his toy had made a break for it and managed to reach the forest before he could react. Sprinting faster; Cren forced himself onward, refusing to look back, the thunderous footsteps behind him being all he needed to know that the macro was right behind him.

Fortunately for him, he had managed to keep a good grip on his battle axe during all the diving around, now he could use it. A huge hand reached down towards him, easily able to hold his entire body in its palm. As the hand neared the wolf struck out suddenly; turning quite abruptly he swung his battle axe in a high arm to strike down with the force that would’ve have cut a normal foe in half regardless of the armour they were wearing. But to this beast all it did was cause a deep cut in its finger; reaching the bone in the finger, but not quite able to get through it. The rat pulled its hand back with a yelp of pain; the finger instantly moving to its maw where it sucked on it, trying to dull the pain. “What do you think of your toy now?” Cren sneered as he took advantage of the rat’s pain and confusion to get a bit of a head start over it.

It didn’t take the macro rat long to recover and realize that the wolf had escaped. The rat creature let out a feral roar that was quite unusual for one of its species. He looked frantically around the forest floor as he stomped forward, searching for the little pest that had hurt him. He no longer cared for playing with it, now it was just doing to die as soon as he found it. Or maybe, he would make it a slow and painful death to make up for his own sufferings, however minute they were. But the tree tops blocked his view as he advanced; he growled out in rage, furious that he couldn’t find his prey. He kicked aside some trees, while uprooting others with his hands; he was in some kind of a berserker fury, turned to it by his bleeding finger.

Cren was getting nervous, the creature was enraged and he didn’t particularly want to think about what it would do to him if he was caught. The feeling of nervousness was nothing new to him, he was nervous almost everytime he went into battle, but this nervousness border lined fear, and he was not used to fear.

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Well thats where I've gotten to so far. Comments please. :shock:
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Minsten
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Postby Cassiel » Mon Mar 26, 2007 10:14 pm

Wow. That story is great. I really want to read how it continues.
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Cassiel
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